Week 19 Ultrasound Image: http://www.pregmed.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/19-Weeks-Pregnant-Ultrasound-Picture.jpg
What to Expect This Appointment?
Week 19, the baby is weighing in at about 8-9 ounces and is measuring at almost 6 inches long. The fruit of the week is a mango. This appointment will be a routine transabdominal ultrasound. This type of ultrasound will allow the doctor to observe both internal and external structures because the baby’s skin is translucent. This week, the scans will be able to get a better look at twins and determine if the twins are conjoined or experiencing twin to twin transfusion syndrome. This ultrasound will allow the doctor to determine fetal anomalies. They will be able to detect neural tube defects, anencephaly, spina bifida, hydrocephaly, cerebral palsy, Down’s syndrome, abnormalities of the limbs, and major organ abnormalities. While most pregnancies do not experience issues, there are exceptions. If any type of fetal anomaly is detected, the doctor will educate the parents the potential issue and will order further testing. Once results are confirmed, the doctor will educate the parents on their choices in the matter. Parents should also consult with their chosen pediatrician to determine a plan of action once the child is born.
Many expectant mothers will experience some leaking from the nipples. This is colostrum. Colostrum is the first secreted fluid from the breasts and is the precursor to their milk. Producing colostrum is the body’s way of preparing for the upcoming baby. If the leaking becomes bothersome, consider using nipple pads.
What is Developing?
Nerve cell production slows down this week. Week 19 sees an emphasis on the neural pathways and the connections. The layer of fat that has slowly been forming under the skin will now have visible blood vessels and veins. The fetus will start to develop a vernix caseosa, or a greasy cheese lie coating. This greasy layer helps to protect the developing fetal skin from the amniotic fluid.
A special layer of brown fat starts to form this week around the internal organs. This is a structure that is unique to newborns because its purpose is to protect the internal organs from temperature extremes during and after the baby’s delivery.
Mothers are getting closer and closer to the half way point of the pregnancy. Week 19 sees the emergence of signs of disorders associated with pregnancy.
Intense pelvic pressure, lower back pain, change in vaginal discharge, and stomach cramps are important to watch out for. While some levels of discomfort are normal, constant or sudden pain can be a cause to worry. If mothers experience any of the above symptoms or symptoms that mimic labor, they should head to the hospital immediately. This could be an indication of the cervix opening and any fetus born during this week wouldn’t survive without extreme medical intervention.
Racing heart, dizziness, changes in vision, swelling, and headaches should be reported to the doctor. These are signs of high blood pressure and could be signs of preeclampsia. Preeclampsia can cause deadly complications for both mother and child, but can be treated with the proper medical attention.
Mothers that find themselves overly tired, constantly thirsty, of having vision problems should be wary of gestational diabetes.